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The Nulification Crisis, Wikipedia: 1

The Nullification Crisis was a United States sectional political crisis in 1832-33, during the presidency of Andrew Jackson, which involved a confrontation between South Carolina and the federal government. It ensued after South Carolina declared that the federal Tariffs of 1828 and 1832 were unconstitutional and therefore null and void within the sovereign boundaries of the state.

Doctrine and Covenants, 87:1-5, the ‘Civil War prophecy’: 2

1 Verily, thus saith the Lord concerning the wars that will shortly come to pass, beginning at the rebellion of South Carolina, which will eventually terminate in the death and misery of many souls;

2 And the time will come that war will be poured out upon all nations, beginning at this place.

3 For behold, the Southern States shall be divided against the Northern States, and the Southern States will call on other nations, even the nation of Great Britain, as it is called, and they shall also call upon other nations, in order to defend themselves against other nations; and then war shall be poured out upon all nations.

4 And it shall come to pass, after many days, slaves shall rise up against their masters, who shall be marshaled and disciplined for war.

5 And it shall come to pass also that the remnants who are left of the land will marshal themselves, and shall become exceedingly angry, and shall vex the Gentiles with a sore vexation.

A later addition the preface to the revelation as published in History of the Church: 3

“Appearances of troubles among the nations, became more visible, this season, than they had previously done, since the church began her journey out of the wilderness. The ravages of the cholera were frightful in almost all the large cities on the globe. The plague broke out in India, while the United States, amid all her pomp and greatness, was threatened with immediate dissolution. The people of South Carolina, in convention assembled (in November), passed ordinances, declaring their state a free and independent nation; and appointed Thursday, the 31st day of January, 1833, as a day of humiliation and prayer, to implore Almighty God to vouchsafe His blessings, and restore liberty and happiness within their borders. President Jackson issued his proclamation against this rebellion, called out a force sufficient to quell it, and implored the blessings of God to assist the nation to extricate itself from the horrors of the approaching and solemn crisis.”

Historical Introduction from the Joseph Smith Papers to the revelation: 4

“The Painesville Telegraph of 21 December 1832 [issued just days before the revelation] highlighted some of these problems. It contained an article titled “Revenge and Magnanimity. A Tale of the Cholera” about the worldwide cholera epidemic, as well as information about a plague in India that was killing 150 to 200 people a day.

The newspaper also included extensive coverage of the passage of a resolution by a Nullification Convention held in November in South Carolina. This resolution declared the federal tariff acts of 1828 and 1832, which levied high duties against imports, “null and void” in the state. Many South Carolina residents believed the acts were passed solely to protect northern manufacturing at the expense of the South. Not only did South Carolinians claim the right to nullify the law, they also stated their willingness to “organize a separate Government” should the federal government try to enforce the tariffs in the state. The governor called for two thousand men to form a militia “for the defence of Charleston and its dependencies.”

President Andrew Jackson responded quickly to this resolution, stating, according to the Telegraph, “that the laws and the Union must be maintained, at all events.”

Because Painesville, Ohio, was only about ten miles from Kirtland, Ohio, it is probable that JS saw or heard about the articles in the 21 December Telegraph within a day or so. These developments troubled JS, who saw in them the threat of the “immediate dissolution” of the United States

Indeed, the 25 December revelation predicted that rebellion on the part of South Carolina would lead not only to civil war and war among nations but also to slave rebellions and an uprising of remnants of the house of Israel. This violence, combined with plague and other natural disasters, would ultimately lead to the “full end of all Nations.” Using millenarian language, the revelation cast such events as portents of the return of Jesus Christ to the earth.”

Excerpt from the Painesville Telegraph, December 21, 1832: 5

The President has issued his proclamation to South Carolina, making known to the people thereof his views of the Constitution, the tariff laws, and the course which he shall deem it his duty to pursue, in regard to nullification. He tells them plainly that the laws and the Union must be maintained, at all events, and warns them of the consequences of resistance.

Washington Correspond’e of the New York Tour. & Enq’r.
Washington, Dec. 4, 1832
Sir:—I have seen your paper of last Saturday, containing my first letter. Agreeably to my anticipations, a quorum of members attended yesterday; and Speaker Stevenson took the chair. The alarm, therefore, which produced a “beating to quarters,” among the opposition, was without cause.

The President, this day, transmitted his message to both houses. It will reach you y express, before this letter; and as I do not intend to criticise or review it, I will only call your attention to the remarks of the Executive, on the tariff laws, as connected with Southern excitement, and you will perceive they are perfect accordance with the view heretofore taken by me. They established the face, that the President feels himself authorized, by the existing laws to coerce South Carolina into submission. Will he make the experiment, with the military force at his command! I think not. Procrastination, will be the order of the day.

You are aware that in the commencement of the session, but little is done in either house. We seldom discuss, and more seldom decide any important question, until after the Christmas holidays. There is, however, a deep interest evidenced in this city, in relation to the measures that Congress or the President may adopt, at this crisis; a crisis calculated to ‘try men’s souls.’

I regret to say, that many of the members are, apparently, indifferent, as to the continuance or dissolution of the Union : while others, from whom moderation was expected, express themselves in virulent terms against the South. Within a few hours, Senator Holmes, of Maine, has given vent to feelings that in my opinion, it would be better policy, and much more kind to smother, if not subdue. If he speaks the sentiments of the party, then, indeed, is there great danger of bloodshed, and we may be destined to witness the ‘outpourings of the bitter waters’ of affliction, upon this late peaceful, prosperous and happy land.

The South and South west complain as with one voice, against what they consider, unconstitutional tariff laws. South Carolina has evinced more open and bold, but not more determined opposition to these laws, than is known to exist in several other States. If coercion is attempted against her, I repeat, she will not be found standing alone. These are not the times for mincing matters. The curtain should be drawn aside. The tariff is a subject of complaint in the South, because it has an existence, and is tangible; because, as she contends, its enactment, is an assumption of power not delegation. But is there not another subject, the agitation of which she constantly apprehends; and in relation to which she is extremely sensative? The mixed population of the Southern States is to them, a source of continual anxiety; but for that reason, if no other, they are united in bands that seem almost indissoluble. In comparison with it, every other question sinks into nothingness. The great principle which governs mankind, (self-interest) must govern them; and it may, by possibility, become self-preservation.

 

Further Study

The Civil War Prophecy – http://www.utlm.org/onlinebooks/changech14.htm#424

Tariff of 1832, Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tariff_of_1832

 

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